Clearwater recognized as Smart Rural Community


Erin Schwager | SAM

Smart community • The village of Clearwater receives Smart Rural Community designation, Friday, from Melissa Lanzourakis, marketing manager for Northeast Nebraska Telephone Company. Accepting on behalf of village are (front row, l-r): Angie Hupp, village clerk; Steve Hankla, village chairman; Lauren Sheridan-Simonsen, economic development director; (back row, l-r): Bill Kester, Cornerstone Bank; Kelly Kerkman and Cody Kester, village trustees and Rod Schlecht, economic development board member.


Northeast Nebraska Telephone Company recognized the Village of Clearwater, in Antelope County, as a Smart Rural Community, Friday, June 24, as part of US92's Clearwater Rodeo broadcast.

The designation comes from the Rural broadband Association in conjunction with NNTC. This recognition is presented to those broadband-enabled communities that see an importance of broadband internet as a way to connect and grow through the capabilities of expanded online education, remote work, telehealth, ag technology, economic development, government services, safety and security. Clearwater is a certified gig-capable community, enabling technology for all those who live and work there.

The Smart Rural Community designation is an opportunity for rural communities to position themselves among a national network of communities powered by innovative rural broadband providers for growth. Gig-capable fiber communities have the power to build a brighter future for small town America.

At a time in Nebraska and the United States, when government is investing millions to help close the "digital divide," Clearwater is already enjoying the same fiber-enabled speeds as those in urban areas like Lincoln and Omaha, according to NNTC officials.

NTCA Chief Executive Officer Shirley Bloomfield also recognized NNTC for the achievement, noting, "We are so excited to welcome another Smart Rural Community provider into this growing network of innovative broadband providers delivering the internet's fastest speeds in some of the most remote and rural communities of our country. I applaud NNTC and Clearwater for their commitment to enabling cutting-edge technologies that drive innovation and promote economic development in their region and nationwide."


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